|The new owner of our first house|
|Our temporary housing|
|At last I could play in the pool|
The move to the rental was probably even easier than the move from the double to our first house. We had already put many large items in storage in preparation of showing our house to potential buyers. Over a period of several evenings, we carted various boxes around the corner and deposited them in the garage. On the day of the actual move, we got family members to join us and by early in the day the move was complete. It had been quick and simple, and we still had most of the day to work. My wife returned to our old house and gave it a thorough cleaning while I swept out the garage. I mowed our old lawn one final time then mowed the rental’s lawn not once but twice because it had become overgrown and unruly. I even had time to edge the walks in front of the rental because sod had been allowed to overgrow the sidewalk. Once the outside chores were complete, my wife and I unpacked everything, hung pictures on the walls and began preparing to host a family pool party to celebrate Mother’s Day the very next day. We were young and energetic, and it really did not seem like a lot of work, which is why our move from this house to our new home caught us totally off guard. But more on that in a moment.
|The family room in progress|
|The sidewalks go in|
|Doors and trim being stained|
|The first thing to go into our house was this portrait|
The small box truck was pretty well loaded down with new furniture as we made the long drive back to Brownsburg. The first thing off the truck was the surprisingly heavy box springs and mattress for the king size bed. Carrying these heavy and awkward items was no small task, and it took a lot of maneuvering, starting and stopping (and quite a few laughs at our ineptitude) to get them up the stairs and into our bedroom. The bed frame, dining room chairs and table (the cabinetry had not yet arrived from China) were much easier. Then came a large, heavy dresser for our bedroom, and hauling it up the stairs seemed to zap the last ounce of strength from both my brother and me. This meant the last thing waiting to come off the truck was an even larger entertainment armoire that was also to go up to our second floor bedroom. By this point my brother’s shoulder, injured in a serious car accident a few years earlier, was really acting up and my muscles were feeling like jello. On top of that, the dropping temperature caused the drizzle which had been falling most of the afternoon to freeze on the ramp of the truck. We tried walking the armoire off the truck, but it was just too icy. Finally, we borrowed a dolly from the next door neighbor and tried strapping in onto that. I manned the dolly with my wife and brother forming a line behind me to act as human brakes, and together we managed to ease (actually, it was more of a controlled slide) the large cabinet down the icy ramp and into the house. However, try as we may, we just could not lift it to get it up the stairs. It would have to remain in the living room until reinforcements (in the form of delivery men bringing the remaining furniture we had purchased at a different store) showed up the next day and carried it up for us with the motivation of a modest tip.
Although we were tempted to camp out at the new house that night, our tearful daughter who was not feeling well convinced us go back to our real beds at the rental. Bright and early the next day, various family members started filing in to help us with the big move. A funny thing happened in those seven months we had lived at the rental, and to this day I cannot explain it. It appears our belongings mated and multiplied, because what had been an easy, quick, stress free move from our first home to the rental was transformed into an exhausting, full day move that would leave the entire family sore and tired. As far as I can recall, we had not purchased anything new other than furniture, which had already been delivered to the new home, and we had even put many of our things in storage. My wife had basically moved the kitchen already, as well as most of her clothes. I think in retrospect, we had probably moved far more in small loads from our first house to the rental over a week’s time then we had realized. One thing I do remember having moved gradually the first time was the books in my library. Now they were boxed and ready to go in one grand move. My poor sister got the unfortunate job of carrying box after box of heavy books down the stairs at the rental, up the ramp to the truck then once at the new house, up the tall set of stairs to my new library. It is ten years later, and I’m still not sure she has recovered fully. The temps had risen that day and a mist hung in the air making it rather muggy despite the snow on the ground. Soon we were all drenched with sweat, and I caught my sister eating snow while my brother grabbed large handfuls and smashed them onto his head for relief. Sara’s mom fed us, and my mom basically observed, but all other able hands were like a swarm of ants always in motion. It was not until dusk was approaching that the last items were unloaded and deposited in the garage to be gradually moved into the house. We thanked our family and sent them limping and moaning on their way. My wife and I continued to unpack until nearly 11:00 that night, then sore and tired, we each took a turn in the new whirlpool tub in an attempt to relieve our wearied muscles.
|Despite a busy week, we made sure to decorate for Christmas|
|Our only real Christmas tree|
|Front yard awaiting lawn|
|Here we go again. Yet another downed tree|
|Started adding perennial beds|
|Another view of the flower bed|
Just as our old house left us with many wonderful memories of starting a family, this home has blessed us with memories of our children transforming into young adults. It has been the site of office Christmas parties, school projects and a theater after-party. It has fed the extended family at Christmas and Thanksgiving, and it is the graveyard of two beloved pets. My son is now away at college, and his sister will join him in just a couple short years. Then Sara and I will again be alone in a home for the first time in about 23 years. It will be a different feeling having this large space to ourselves without the added life and noise of our children, but we must look at it as just the next chapter in the long story of our lives. I hope to write many more chapters here, and if by chance they have some entertaining moments, I will share them with you here. But for now, I think I’ll sit back and enjoy the fire and watch the birds cavorting about the feeder on the deck.